Section 408.85  Program


a)         The caregiver and parent shall discuss the child's health, development, behavior and activities to ensure consistency in planning for the child.


b)         The program shall include opportunities for a child to have free choice of activities to play alone, if desired, or with one or several chosen peers.


c)         The facility shall provide a basic program of activities geared to the age levels and developmental needs of the children served. The daily program shall provide:  


1)         Informal activities, providing a family atmosphere that promotes the physical and emotional well-being of the individual;


2)         Encouragement for children to participate in age appropriate household routines such as preparing food, setting tables, and cleaning up;


3)         Regularity of such routines as eating, napping, and toileting with sufficient flexibility to respond to the needs of individual children;


4)         A balance of active and quiet activity;


5)         Daily indoor and outdoor activities in which children make use of both large and small muscles;


6)         Occasional trips and activities away from the facility (frequency to be determined by the caregiver);


7)         A supervised nap period for children under six years of age who remain five or more hours.  This nap period for the group should not normally exceed two and one-half hours.  Children who remain for as long as four consecutive hours shall have a supervised rest period.


d)         The daily program of the facility shall provide experiences which promote the individual child's growth and well-being and the development of self-help and communication skills, social competence, and positive self-identity.


e)         Program planning shall provide the following:  


1)         A variety of activities which takes into consideration individual differences in interest, attention span, and physical and intellectual maturity;


2)         Sufficient time for activities and routines, so that the children can manage them and progress at their own developmental rate;


3)         Sufficient materials and equipment to avoid excessive competition and long waits;


4)         Program planning so that the children are not always required to move from one activity to another as a total group;


5)         A program that avoids long waiting periods between activities and prolonged periods during which the children must stand or sit;


6)         Provision for privacy through arranging a small, quiet area that is easily accessible to the child who seeks or needs time to be alone; and


7)         A variety of chores and activities at the child's developmental level.


f)         Materials and toys shall be kept clean, orderly, attractive, and accessible to the children.  The group day care home may not use or have on the premises any unsafe children's product as described in the Children's Product Safety Act and 89 Ill. Adm. Code 386 (Children's Product Safety).


g)         There shall be stimulating play and learning materials; these may include household items used creatively.


h)         Each child's individuality shall be respected and a sense of self and development of self esteem shall be encouraged.


i)          Children shall not be left unattended and adult supervision shall be provided at all times.


j)          The program shall take into account the stress and fatigue that result from constant pressures and stimulation of long hours in a group living situation.


k)         Activity areas, equipment, and materials shall be arranged so that staff can be easily aware of the children's presence and activity at all times.


l)          Equipment shall be arranged in orderly, clearly defined areas of interest, with sufficient space in each area for the children to see various activities available to them.


(Source:  Amended at 34 Ill. Reg. 18411, effective December 15, 2010)